Return of the Prodigal* Spring

By Eleanor Harris

I am feeling such joy these days watching Spring become outrageously beautiful. Right now the Virginia Bluebells are blooming with their little blue and pink trumpets hailing the resurrection from dormancy.

We’ve added an Oriole feeder to the back yard next to the hummingbird and suet feeders so we have wonderful shows from the kitchen window as well as from the bedroom windows. Bright orange, red, luminescent green and purple, not to forget the black, white, and yellow feathers of our bird friends. And a robin’s nest with a patient mom in a crook of a downspout.

A big rabbit visits along with squirrels and chipmunks.

The trees are leafing out, hostas emerging, bulbs giving way to a lovely carpet of violets, and the columbine budding before they join the pageant.

Joy. God loving me through this extravagant creation. Loving this whole poor and splendid planet and all its inhabitants.

Yesterday we went to Havenwoods. In the swampiest part of the walk, the trees were loud with the trill of tree frogs. I videoed and recorded this full-throated but invisible chorus in those silent trees. I replay it again and again.

I remember just a few weeks ago when some of the birds were returning but the woods and earth were still mostly brown. Staying home during the pandemic, the return of the green felt so slow in coming. But now the prodigal Spring is returning.

While I can’t remember a day where I have felt no pain from the malady, many more days have been mild than moderate or severe. I am so grateful.

My prayers are mainly “thank you.”

* The only time I heard “prodigal” used was in the story of the prodigal son. When reading Barbara Kingsolver’s, Prodigal Summer, I looked up the definition and to my surprise it means wastefully extravagant, reckless spending of money and resources. My favorite definitions are outrageously extravagant and flamboyant That’s Spring for you!